le corbusier’s chandigarh

Despite whatever actual record of Le Corbusier’s involvement in the city, Chandigarh belongs to him. Most people I have met, architect or not, must tell me, with (usually) pride or (once) disdain, that “this city was designed by a Frenchman….Le Corbusier.”

Le Corbusier designed the master plan, gave an edict for its realization and operation, and designed the Capitol Complex at the head of the city, as well as a handful of institutional buildings in the city (Colleges of Architecture & Art, City Museum, & (sort of) the imported City Archive…others? What am I missing?)

He is also responsible for the hierarchic road system, which contains 7 layers, or V’s.

V1:  national highway: coming in and out of Chandigarh, fastest traffic

V2: main roads in Chandigarh: Madhya Marg and Dakshin Marg, a lot of fast traffic

V3: roads between sectors, fast traffic

V4: east west roads through the middle of sectors: shops and residences, slower traffic

V5: main loop road within sector, slow traffic

V6: roads leading to houses, slowest traffic

V7: pedestrian paths, blocked by walk-though gates and turnstiles to every other form of traffic

Below are images of Corbusier’s buildings…the famous monuments of Chandigarh…all most definitely worth seeing in person.

7 thoughts on “le corbusier’s chandigarh

  1. Fascinating. I didn’t know anything of Le Corbusier’s involvement in India. I’m not a big fan of “machines for living,” but these works have me intrigued.

    What a fabulous opportunity you’ve got, Melissa. Thanks for sharing via the blog, which I’ll watch with interest. (I was a once-aspiring architect back in my youth–fun to re-live a bit of that.)

    Safe travels.

    1. Thanks….and good to hear from you! And if you ever feel the need to dig deeper into Le Corbusier and India I can certainly recommend some books. Chandigarh is an interesting legacy…his intention has left an enormous mark on the city’s administration, and his edict is still used as the primary reference for master plan revisions, despite radically changing conditions on the ground.

      1. Hey Melissa
        wonderful article. I AM interested in deeper information as I am an architecture student and doing research in his urban planning of chandigarh. I’d be really grateful.


  2. I am working with an Indian who grew up in Chandigarh. He has only pride and good things to say about the town. IT’s interesting as the image of Le Corbusier is often having design unlivable places … Certainly a lace I would like to see … The architecture is brutal but interesting. Philippe. Australia

  3. Hey this is Saurabh Mittal from Chandigarh and an architecture student at Chandigarh College of Architecture, Chandigarh…
    If u guyz need any information on Chandigarh i will be happy to help you …
    u can find me on E-mail – saurs_chd@yahoo.com

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